What Is the Relationship Between SEO and Social Media?

It might seem impossible to get recognition online. You run one of the millions of businesses competing for search rankings, followers, and sales. 

Don’t get too discouraged, though. While there’s a lot of competition, there’s still a lot of space for you to find success if you know how to work things. We’re going to explore two key components of your digital marketing campaign today, covering SEO and social media. 

Specifically, we’re looking at how your social media page can fuel your SEO efforts and vice versa. Hopefully, the information below can help you boost your bottom line through digital marketing. 

Let’s get started.

SEO and Social Media: What’s The Connection?

If we’re looking at how to pair social media and SEO, we have to understand a few of the fundamentals of each. We’ll take a look at both social media marketing and SEO, followed by an explanation of how the pieces discussed fit together to help one another. 

Search Engine Optimisation

SEO is the process of tailoring your website and all of its content to rank in search engine searches. Google’s algorithm is excellent at finding the right content to display to its users, but you have to make yourself presentable to be selected. 

In other words, having a website about football won’t automatically cause you to rank in baseball football-related searches. Millions of other football websites would like to rank for the most popular searches. If two websites had the same subject matter and quality of content, the one with better optimisation would rank higher. 

In this way, we can think of optimisation as something separate but related to the quality of your content. You have to do the keyword research, optimise the search terms, and make sure your website is up to speed for users. 

As time goes on, you’ll have to optimise for new keyword phrases. That requires that you produce enough content to keep up with the changing keyword landscape. 

Keyword Research

Content creation is something that confuses a lot of people. There’s an idea that you can sit down at your computer, write a blog about whatever comes to your head, and start to get a following. 

The early days of blogging might have looked something like that, but that’s not the formula for a business blog, unfortunately. Your content should come in response to the keyword research that you do.

Optimal keywords are those that are popular but have very little competition. To stick with our football example, imagine that you’re a football news website. 

Ideally, you would rank in the top spot for anyone searching “football news.” The reality is that there are tens of thousands of football sites on the web, and some of those will always dominate the most popular search phrase. 

Big competition has longstanding success online, and that success leads Google to place it toward the top. The beautiful thing is that the most popular keywords in each niche have dozens of secondary keywords that are slightly less popular. 

For example, instead of “football news,” a secondary search phrase might be “interesting football news” or “football events in my area.” These are similar to the popular term, but their slight differences open up space for you to compete for rankings. 

Enough people search secondary terms to justify trying to rank for them. At the end of the day, small businesses that try to rank for the most popular term will get tossed to the bottom of the results. The less popular terms give us a fighting chance. 

Content Creation

When you find the keyword phrase, your job is to create content optimised for that phrase. 

The content should also be in response to that phrase. For example, “football news near me” might prompt you to write a post about the best stadiums in your area. It could also prompt you to write a post about getting the best information on events happening around your city. 

When the content is geared toward a particular term, it is a lot easier to place the keyword naturally within that content. Google’s algorithm accounts for keyword stuffing, which is essentially placing an unnatural keyword into content where it doesn’t belong. 

So, writing naturally and incorporating keywords is essential if you don’t want to lose rankings. 

Keyword research and content creation are two of the primary pieces of SEO, while many other things have to happen. In fact, there are roughly 200 search factors that can be optimised for. 

That said, your content is the foundation that drives rankings. As you start to get more traffic on your content, Google will take note, and your rankings will improve. 

The snowball effect accumulates, and the success of each post trickles down to your homepages and other posts. Anything you do to get more traffic will improve your rankings. Rankings will come back around and draw more traffic. 

This is where social media comes in. 

Social Media Campaigns

Social media success isn’t one of the ranking factors that Google lists. In other words, a bunch of shares, followers, and likes on social media won’t do much good for your website rankings. 

Not directly, anyway. The relationship between social media and SEO is an indirect one. While these success metrics aren’t direct influences on search rankings, they indicate the nature of your brand. 

Google’s bots look at how you engage online, the things you talk about, and the people you talk to. All of these things give Google a clear idea of your niche and target audience. 

The demographic information that Google gathers on individuals and groups allows it to tailor search results to the interest of those people. So, it’s a big deal when Google can place you in a category of interest. 

All of this is to say that engaging on social media and frequenting the niches you do business in is one way of helping Google know where you’d like to rank. 

Beyond that, there’s another huge factor that social media helps with, and that’s traffic to your site. 

Content and Social Media Traffic

All of the work in SEO aims to display your pages to people who are interested in them. When you’ve got a big social media following, you pretty much cut through that process and get the opportunity to put your content right in front of a curated audience. 

When someone follows you, it’s like they’re permitting you to market to them on their feed. You should use the content that you create for SEO on your social media platforms. 

Posting that content for your following allows them to engage with it and get directed back to your website. This is powerful independent of search rankings because those users might move on to make a purchase, subscribe, or engage with your success metrics.

In terms of rankings, though, keep in mind that Google puts values on engagements within your site. They monitor how people act when they hit your pages. How long they stay, how often they come, and the links that are hit most heavily are all factors. 

So, when people are drawn to your website from a post on your social media account, that traffic lets Google know that you’re a valuable site. 

Networking and Brand Reputation

One of the recent advances in Google’s algorithm is the acknowledgement of context and online discussion. It can see who you’re associating with. It can also see what you’re talking about. 

Building a brand is hard work, and it’s nice that search rankings have started to reflect that. Social media is a primary source for networking and branding. Chatting and working with other companies and influencers will help boost your image in the algorithm’s eyes. 

When you look at things this way, it all seems very mathematical. It’s important to look at digital marketing this way. At the same time, your approach doesn’t have to be very forced. 

Google values quality content from brands that are in the keyword niche in question. That means you have to produce content that your users value and engage with other companies that share your niche. 

This is the normal way of going about things, and those would likely be goals for you even if you weren’t considering digital marketing. In other words, ranking in Google requires that you’re trying to serve your customers well. 

Adding the finer points of a marketing campaign helps a lot, but make sure you don’t get lost in optimisation and forget to focus on quality. 

Want to Learn More about Digital Marketing?

Understanding the connection between SEO and social media is a big step in the right direction. There’s a lot more to understand if you want to reach the top, though. 

We’re here to help. Explore our site for more insight into online advertising, local SEO, organic SEO, and more.